“If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.”
--Audre Lorde

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New York Libraries in Crisis

Sad things are happening to each of our borough's public libraries. Major staffing cuts, branches will soon close. There are a few campaigns to combat the cuts, and a 24 Hour Read-In today that will happen on the steps of the Grand Army Plaza Brooklyn Public Library. Daunting library times.

Rhymes with Bean: A Do-It-Yourself Zine Definition

As I am doing a bit of schoolwork and other projects related to zines and print culture, I dug up an old piece that I had originally written for the Madison Zine Fest's website in 2005. I thought it might be useful to share here. Re-reading it again in combination with another survey of the literature has likewise inspired me to create more comprehensive list of definitions, so stay tuned for that.

(click through for)
Rhymes with Bean: A Do-It-Yourself Zine Definition

Critical Pedagogy and Library Instruction Report Back

Writing after a thorough brain workout at the Critical Pedagogy and Library Instruction session held here at home base in the Brooklyn College Library yesterday.

Ira Shor, presenting the first portion of our event, was really enlivening. I appreciated how he infused discussions of class, social consciousness and context into all what he spoke about. A few notes that I jotted down from his talk follow below.

Bloggers Throughout Time and Space

I just clicked over to the Utne Reader for this post: Rare Photo of Early 20th Century Bloggers

The Rights of Readers and the Threat of the Kindle

Today is our first talk about readers' rights and ebooks, at the LACUNY Emerging Technologies event at Baruch College. I thought folks might be interested in the website that Matt and I have created to store information about our talks (as well as the presentation slides): it's over at readersbillofrights.info

Are you going?

I'm thinking of trying to swing it...

Documenting Struggle Redux: Radical New York City Archives


Radical Reference presents a second evening about how community history is documented and celebrated. Archivists and activists will present parts of their collections and discuss how their work keeps the struggle alive. (Details about our first "Documenting Struggle" can be found at http://radicalreference.info/radicalarchivesevent.)

Monday, April 26
Brecht Forum
451 West St (between Bank & Bethune Sts), NYC
$6/10/15 sliding scale (no one turned away)

April 23rd LACUNY Program: Electronic Books and Electronic Readers: Emerging Issues and Questions

Title: Electronic Books and Electronic Readers: Emerging Issues and Questions
Sponsor: The LACUNY Emerging Technologies Committee
Date: Friday, April 23rd
Time: 2:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Location: CHANGED ROOM! Baruch College Vertical Campus--room 11-150 on the 11th floor.

Speakers & Presentations

Alycia Sellie & Matthew Goins - Brooklyn College

"The Rights of Readers and the Threat of the Kindle"

Critical Library Instruction: Theories and Methods

This might be a *little* late, but Critical Library Instruction: Theories and Methods is out(!), and my copy is on the way(!), and you can get your own here(!).

This is definitely one of my most highly anticipated library texts to come out post MLS!

Upcoming Events

Lots of upcoming news and events for the Spring semester, most notably:

I'll be speaking with Matthew Goins at two upcoming events about eBooks and readers' rights:

I'll be participating in ACRL's Immersion Teacher Track program this Summer in Burlington, Vermont. I wrote in my application that I am
interested to examine how critical pedagogy fits into library instruction, so I am excited to see how this can be discussed within the larger frameworks of the program. I'm also excited to get the chance to focus on teaching for a bit and to share what I learn with my colleagues.

And finally, I am really excited to be a part of the upcoming Center for the History of Print Culture in Modern America's Library History Seminar XII: Libraries in the History of Print Culture. I can't wait to hear Janice Radway speak and to spend some time in Madison talking about print culture (whilst also enjoying some New Glarus!).

Queens Librarian Talk

Jenna and I will be presenting "Zines 101" tomorrow at the Queens Public Library. I'm excited to spend some time looking at works with our librarian audience as an attempt to define them (an illustration of my DIY Zine Definition). For slides you can see Jenna's post.

CHANGED DATE! - Critical Pedagogy and Library Instruction Event

Library Association of CUNY Instruction Committee Spring Event "Critical Pedagogy and Library Instruction"

Saturday, May *8*, 2010
Brooklyn College Library

This event is free and open to the public.

Please RSVP by April 9th via the webform at: http://tinyurl.com/ycj239j

Click through for more details...

Get a copy of The Borough is my Library/Biblioball Zine!

For all of you who may not be able to make it to the Biblioball on Friday night, you can now order a copy of The Borough is my Library zine through paypal! Complete with silkscreen covers and special inserts! Proceeds go to Literacy for Incarcerated Teens: http://www.literacyforincarceratedteens.org/LIT/Welcome_.html

You can order a copy online here.

Click through for contact info for mail and international orders*

*If you would like to order a copy via the mail email alycia(at)brokenja(dot)ws for mailing address and further details, or to get a quote for additional shipping costs for international orders.

The Borough is my Library Debut!

The Borough is my Library: A Greater Metropolitan Library Workers Zine

An exploration of the bibliographic undergrowth of New York City through the eyes of those at work in independent libraries, academic institutions and in the streets. Featuring day-in-the-life comics created by zine librarians, narratives of those who started their own collections from scratch, and other works that explore library microcosms within the city. With works by members of the ABC No Rio Zine Library, Books Through Bars, Branch Project, Radical Reference, Reanimation Library and more!

Copies available on a sliding scale $3 – $7. All profits go to Literacy for Incarcerated Teens. Other issues available online here.

Due to demand, I'm now in the second printing of issue #1, which means that if you place an order, I'll send you an entirely black and white version (as pictured above).

The Borough is My Library #1

Contents of The Borough is my Library Vol.1 No.1:

  • Branch: Libraries as Public Space Interventions/Jerome Chu
  • The Work of the Zine in the Age of Social Networking/Jack Z. Bratich
  • A Day in the Life of a Reference + Zine Librarian in New York City: March 24, 2009/Jenna Freedman
  • Books Through Bars/Victoria Law
  • Kathleen Hanna and Riot Grrrl Archives/Kate Angell
  • The Cataloging Department/Suckzoo Han
  • Radical Reference/Melissa Morrone
  • Solace Among the Stacks/Eric Nelson
  • Reanimation Library/Andrew Breccone
  • Paperdoll Librarian/Caitlin Quinn
  • (portions of) East Village Inky/Ayun Halliday
  • Also: Reprints from Synergy, ed. by Celeste West

Donate Art for ABC No Rio Clothesline Benefit

Dear Artist--

ABC No Rio, the Lower East Side gallery and arts center, is planning another of our Clothesline Benefit Art Sales to raise money for our Building Fund.

The event will take place on December 10th and 11th. We are asking artists who support ABC No Rio to participate by donating work.

Work should be no larger than 11" X 17", and limited to two works per artist. All work will be presented on clotheslines strung through No Rio's gallery space, and should be unframed, two-dimensional work.

Currently Reading

Zines in Third Space: Radical Cooperation and Borderlands Rhetoric

Alycia's favorite books »

Daily Reading Log

July 22, 2015

  • Started Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

May 29, 2015

  • Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. So funny!

May 1, 2015

  • The best thing I've ever gulped down while on the train; tired and delayed, clutching the pole, banging into others, totally gone.

    "I slipped my hand behind my ribcage, removed my heart, and smashed it into the carpet."

April 7, 2015

  • "CC-BY unrest" by Gavia Libraria/the Library Loon
  • Simon Gikandi's Editor's Column in PMLA from 2013, "The Fantasy of the Library":
    • "My faith in the library as custodian of culture and civilization was premised on what now appears an unforgivable form of blindness--the belief that libraries were autonomous, objective fountains of knowledge. Enchanted by books and the buildings that housed them, one could easily forget that libraries were often institutions of power." (12).

March 27, 2015

  • Reading Kim Gordon's Girl in a Band, and revisiting my favorite Sonic Youth songs (the Kim ones, duh).

March 11, 2015

March 1, 2015

  • More CUNY reading: Kelly Blanchat's “Optimizing KBART Guidelines to Restore Perpetual Access” in Collection Development, 34.1.

September 1-2, 2014

  • Yesterday gulped down Anya Ulinich's Lena Finkle's Magic Barrel, and now I just want to binge read graphic novels...
  • Back to a bit of Cvetkovich's An Archive of Feelings, but distractedly, because I keep wanting to mine the bibliography instead of moving ahead.

August 31 2014

  • Lauren Berlant's article, "'68 or Something," (Critical Inquiry, Vol. 21, No. 1 (Autumn, 1994), pp. 124-155): "This essay is written in favor of refusing to relinquish utopian practice, of refusing the apparently inevitable movement from tragedy to farce that has marked so much of the analysis of social movements generated post '68. I meant to place '68 in a scene of collaborations and aspirations for thinking, describing, and theorizing social change in the present tense, but a present tense different from what we can now imagine for pragmatic, possible, or useful politics." 125-126.
  • Freeland, Cynthia A. "Feminist frameworks for horror films." Post-theory: Reconstructing film studies (1996): 195-218. Such a great find for that project I'm trying to revive.

August 20-21, 2014

  • Yesterday morning, started Lauren Berlant's article, "'68 or Something," (Critical Inquiry, Vol. 21, No. 1 (Autumn, 1994), pp. 124-155) because it had been cited by Cvetkovich in her footnotes, and really enjoyed the very first part. Still working on it.
  • Yesterday afternoon, serendipity reminded me to how little I know about Ralph Bunche, so started Ralph Bunche: Model Negro or American Other? by Charles Henry. There a quick way to explain who Bunche was--the first African American to win the Nobel prize--but he was so much more, and yet is still a relatively overlooked historical figure.

August 19, 2014

  • The intro to Ann Cvetkovich's An Archive of Feelings: Trauma, Sexuality, and Lesbian Public Cultures on the train this morning. Didn't read any more because I wanted to be sure to go back and make note of a few portions, and to be sure to put a few things from the bibliography on my reading list.

August 14, 2014

  • Bonnie Gordon's paper, "Towards Open Metadata and Bibliographic Data." A really useful summary of all the issues surrounding open linked data for libraries!